Wiregrass-Area Bicentennial Schools and Projects

Rehobeth Elementary School • Houston County • Grades K through 6, 9 through 12

Project: “Got food? Thank a farmer!"

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Description: The community of Rehobeth is a rural community in Southeast Alabama. Many individuals in our small community are farmers or have been raised on farms. The project seeks to foster an understanding of agriculture with the students at Rehobeth Elementary School (RES) and to develop friendships between students. Limited resources in our area make it difficult for students to have community-based experiences that influence our agriculturally based area. This project proposes for students at RES to see how food is grown and to take part in that process.

Our Life Skills students (our students with lower academic and social skills) will develop friendships with our Student Council (“Farm Friends") and students from Rehobeth High School. Various dates will be set up throughout the school year for students to visit Rehobeth High School and partner with the RHS FFA. During these dates, the students at RES will assist maintaining vegetables through different activities. Several events and community-based field trips will also be set up during the 20189-2019 school year (i.e. Touch a Tractor, visits to local farms). During the Summer of 2019, the crops (tomatoes and watermelons) will be harvested and given to a local food bank, Love in Action. A fall crop of cabbage will also be grown.

In order to have the project reach all students at RES, seed-starters will be in classrooms, farmers will be invited as guest speakers, students will write about their experiences, and teachers will utilize available resources to ensure cross-curricular exposure to agriculture.

Rehobeth Middle School • Houston County • Grades 6 through 12

Project: “Got food? Thank a farmer!"

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Description: Rehobeth is a rural community where farming is essential, yet most of our students do not appreciate the time, energy, patience, and endurance that farmers must have in order to have success. We will have farmers from our community come to our school to teach students how to grow watermelon, tomatoes, and cabbage. In the process, we will have these community leaders mentor our students as well.

This project will provide community service, mentors, community involvement, cross-generational interaction while also benefiting our community by providing food for the homeless and less fortunate. All food that is produced through this project will be donated to Love in Action, a group dedicated to helping the homeless and needy in Dothan, Alabama. Our students will get to be a part of the donation process and see the efforts of their labor going to help others in their community.

RMS will get as many students involved as possible, but we will focus on our special needs students receiving mentoring from their peers of the same age group. We will ask math teachers to do problems of ratio, square footage, and proportion about the fertilizer, plants, and yielded crop; science teachers will discuss the nutrients in the soil; history and English teachers will work collaboratively to have students interview farmers about the history of this area, record it, and present the information.

Rehobeth High School • Houston County • Grades K through 12

Project: “Alabama Agricultural Advancement – Got Food? Thank a Farmer!"

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Description: Rehobeth is a farming community. Unfortunately, the community around us is made up of farmers who know the difficulties of agriculture and a vast majority of individuals who do not appreciate the farming community. This project seeks to foster an understanding of agriculture with the students of the three Rehobeth schools: elementary, middle, and high. We hope to bridge the gap between the two diverse communities: agriculture and academia. We also hope to develop friendships through our mentoring program. Farmers will mentor all of the students but especially the high school students, while the high school students will mentor the middle and elementary. Most younger students admire older ones; we hope through this project to foster relationships that will last a lifetime and help these students in realizing they can have friends of all ages and backgrounds.

The students at RHS will partner with the students at RMS and RES to grow crops to donate to Love in Action, a local food bank for the homeless and less fortunate. Several events and community-based field trips will be set up during the 2018-2019 school year to enhance the relationship with the students and farmers. During the Fall of 2018, a fall crop of cabbage will be harvested and taken to Love in Action and then in the Spring of 2019, a crop of tomatoes and watermelons will be delivered by our students, farmers, and stakeholders.

Eufaula Elementary School • Barbour County • Grades 3 through 5

Project: “A Walk to Remember"

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Description: Each year in April, thousands of people flock to Eufaula, Alabama to gain a glimpse of days gone by. Our town is steeped in Antebellum history and has opened the doors to our town for over 50 years. The Seth Lore and Irwinton Historic District has become the largest in East Alabama and second-largest in Alabama. The town boasts over 700 structures listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Visitors are invited into antebellum homes, museums, and structures that document Eufaula's rich history. Our school will partner with the Eufaula Heritage Association to design a walking tour brochure that can be used by visitors as part of our annual Pilgrimage, as well as those visitors that travel to Eufaula throughout the year. This walking tour guide will showcase various points of interest around town with a picture and a QR code. Walkers will scan the QR code to see a video of Eufaula Elementary students sharing historical facts about the point of interest. Students will also learn how to pin these historical points of interest to Google Earth, pushing Eufaula into the global community and leading to an increase in tourism. Each third through fifth-grade class will take several points of interest in Eufaula to research and present. Our fourth graders will work together to compile all of this information into a brochure that can be distributed to visitors at Shorter Mansion, the heart of Eufaula's Heritage Association as well as the Eufaula Chamber of Commerce.

Eufaula High School • Barbour County • Grades 9 through 12

Project: “Jewish Heritage in Eufaula"

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Description: Students will partner with the last remaining Jewish family in Eufaula, Alabama and create an oral history project preserving their unique and inspiring legacy. Their story begins in 1939, when Mr. and Mrs. Abe Rudderman purchased their home on North Eufaula Avenue. The home is still in their family today. Built in 1845 by Eufaula's first mayor, Dr. Will Thornton, this magnificent antebellum structure was a wedding gift to his daughter Mary. Since the 1930's the Rudderman family has continually recorded their story and preserved family heirlooms to share with their relatives, friends and entire community. Every year, the Rudderman's open their home to the Eufaula Pilgrimage Tour of Homes. The tour begins on their front porch where visitors view the Star of David stain glass window over their front door. The Rudderman's are the last remaining Jewish family in Eufaula. At one point there was a small but vibrant group of Jewish families who had successful businesses and worshiped at a small synagogue downtown. When the Great Depression hit, majority of these families moved to larger Southern cities. All that remains today of their story is a forgotten corner of Fairview Cemetery in downtown Eufaula, a menorah from the Jewish synagogue donated to the First Presbyterian Church and the Rudderman family. Students from the Local History class at Eufaula High School will meet with the Rudderman family over the next year and capture their remarkable story. The end result will be an exhibit at the Eufaula Chamber of Commerce.

Eufaula Primary School • Barbour County • Grades K through 2

Project: “Young Minds Brightening Our Community"

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Description: Helping children understand that they play important roles in their community can be a daunting task. We want our young students to experience positive ways in which they can interact with and make a difference in our community. With 83 percent of EPS students on free or reduced lunch, we especially want them to realize they can contribute to this project. As a school, we will read Maybe Something Beautiful: How Art Transformed a Neighborhood and discuss with students how art can make people in our community feel better and spread a positive message. Students will work together to create paintings to brighten the patient rooms at Medical Center Barbour. They will also decorate welcome bags for each room filled with information about the Eufaula/Barbour County area, word searches, crossword puzzles, etc. Additionally, being a part of a community means learning about its history and sharing it with others. Eufaula has a rich history. The students will learn about important people, places, and events from Eufaula's history when the director of the Eufaula Heritage Association comes to talk with them at our school. Our students will then create pictures representing these important places and events on river rocks to hide around our community during Eufaula’s 54th Annual Pilgrimage. This will encourage discussions about our county and town among the people who find them. These activities will help our students learn about how important it is for them to be a caring member of our community.

Elba Elementary School • Coffee County • Grades K through 6

Project: “Alabama Unplugged: Back to Our Roots"

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Description: Alabama Unplugged: Back to Our Roots will be a multi-project initiative designed to promote conservation, awareness, and enjoyment of the natural beauty of our state. Throughout the academic year, students will hear directly from writers, conservationists, and herpetologists that will provide educational opportunities and hands-on activities. Each guest speaker will kick-off a specific phase of smaller projects which are outlined in the projected timeline. The overall initiative will culminate in a community book signing and conservation showcase where students will present their own work and projects.

Elba High School • Coffee County • Grades 7 through 12

Project: “Elba is Able"

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Description: Elba High School students will conduct oral interviews of Elba residents and natives that have survived the numerous floods in Elba's history. After interviews have been conducted, students will put together a presentation of interviews to present before the school on a designated day. Furthermore, possibly even have significant interviewees as guest speakers the day of the presentation. The students involved in the project and their extracurricular organizations will then host a formal community banquet to showcase the same presentation for the community. Tickets will be sold to attend that will help fund a small monument to be placed at the school to showcase the Alabama Bicentennial Schools 2018-2019 project. Student organizations will sponsor and serve tables of adults at the event as well as introduce guest speakers and present their oral history presentations.

Florala High School • Covington County • Grade 11

Project: “Back in Time Interview"

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Description: Students are required to interview a person 60 years or older and ask a series of questions about past experiences. The project focuses on local and world events as well as family dynamics. We then plan to post the videos on school and community websites. I also would like to have a reception at the end of the project where we invite those that were interviewed, as wells as, local news agencies to come watch clips of each interview.

Luverne High School • Crenshaw County • Grades K through 6

Project: “The Stories of Crenshaw County – A Conversation"

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Description: This project will utilize PressBooks software to capture community conversations regarding the heritage of their community in a hostable eBook format. Students will interview and engage with community members to listen, capture and publish to preserve the “stories" of Crenshaw County citizens.

Harry N. Mixon Intermediate School • Dale County • Grades 3 through 5

Project: “Alabama: 200 Years to Celebrate"

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Description: Our school's student body will create a mixed media mural using acrylic paint and/or various other mediums to be displayed at our local art museum on the square in downtown Ozark. The mural will be titled “Alabama: 200 Years to Celebrate." The Alabama State Flag will be depicted in our mural with key figures from Alabama history, important state events and milestones, as well as using various other symbols of Alabama's rich history. We will send out student, parent, community surveys to gather information and ideas that our community and parents feel are important aspects to include in our mural. We will use the information gathered via our parent, student, and community surveys to select what information and symbols will be included in our mural. We believe that our community, students. and parents should participate in the selection, creation, and display of our Bicentennial mural to encourage community involvement and community support regarding the celebration of Alabama's Bicentennial. The outcome of our project is to create in each student an understanding, appreciation, respect and love for Alabama which will prepare our students to become the future leaders and caretakers of our great state.

Samson Elementary School • Geneva County • Grades 4, 5, 11, and 12

Project: “Alabama Bicentennial Book Box"

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Description: This project seeks to improve the relationship between the local schools and the greater community. The project would consist of a small, enclosed cabinet that will be built by the Samson High School shop students while mentoring the younger students of Samson Elementary. This free Little Library will be installed in a joint ceremony with students, seniors, community members, and leaders in a common and convenient location close to the community senior center, and all three schools, as well as residential homes. The finished project will include the installation of a plaque designating the project as a gift to the community from the students of Samson in honor of Alabama's 200th Bicentennial.

Headland Middle School • Henry County • Grades 6 through 9

Project: “Operation Holiday Cheer"

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Description: The Student Government Association of Headland Middle School is proposing a project to allow our group to connect with the elderly in our community. Through a number of holiday visits to the local nursing home, the students will interact with the residents, engage in conversations, sing holiday carols, and present the residents with holiday cards and care packages throughout the year. The students will also sponsor a number of elderly individuals through SARCOA's “Santa for Seniors". Not only will the students bring joy to the elderly, they will also learn valuable stories, lessons, and experiences from an older generation of individuals.

Webb Elementary School • Houston County • Grades K through 6

Project: “Rollin' On The River"

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Description: Students will investigate the factors that led to the rise and fall of Columbia and Webb, Alabama, due to its reliance on a booming economic system – the steamboat – and the Lower Chattahoochee River. By investigating the historical events of Columbia and Webb (which grew out of Columbia), students will recognize how change affects a prosperous community by technological advances. Understanding the economical function of the George W. Andrews Lock and Dam will reveal the evolution of steamboats to barges on the river. Learning about influential people of the river system will also provide insight to the mystery and majesty of the Chattahoochee River. Through the “Rollin’ On The River” Project, students will realize the importance of Heritage Tourism and the affect that it has had on the community around them.

Montana Elementary Magnet School • Houston County • Grades K through 5

Project: “Kids Rooted in Community"

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Description: Seeking to enhance the area around Montana Magnet, the school has chosen to create a partnership with a neighborhood organization in order to develop a sense of community and extend a helping hand that would benefit both the organization and student body. The school is located in a largely economically disadvantaged neighborhood. The USA Census identifies the track on which Montana is located as being at a 48% poverty level. Not a single home is listed as having an income of $75,000 or higher. In the same track a few blocks from the school is Aunt Katie’s Community Garden, a site used for high-density food production and location of the proposed project. The garden’s mission is to improve access to healthy food, while promoting wellness and creating a walkable, healthy and economically vibrant neighborhood. This project will work to increase the community’s awareness of the garden as a place to visit, utilize and support. The partnership will consist of a variety of activities to be completed throughout the year. The school will provide man/kid power for workdays. Grade levels will lease beds for planting and in turn give the produce back to the garden for distribution to the surrounding neighborhood. The school will host a garden showcase event to promote the garden. This event will invite the neighborhood with decorated pots containing growing vegetables that will be distributed to homes throughout the area. These projects will foster a relationship between the students, faculty and parents with the surrounding neighboring community.

Banks Middle School • Pike County • Grades 4 through 8

Project: “Banks Town Hall Beautification Project"

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Description: Two old trees will be removed from in front of city hall and two flower beds will replace the spots the trees are in. In one flower bed a new flag pole will be erected as well as lights to highlight the flag at night. A veteran's memorial marker and lights will be placed in the other. The plan is to use flowers that match the school colors (blue/white). The project will involve a cooperative partnership between Banks Middle School, the Town of Banks, and Boy Scout Troop 41. Eagle Scout prospect Caleb Green will be assisting with the project in order to earn his Eagle Scout rank. With the help of Banks students, Caleb is going to make benches to go near the flower beds. Teachers will also take part in a school level professional development designed to increase their knowledge of Alabama. They will in turn pass this information along to their students. The importance of our military and the role Alabamians have played in it will be another topic that is covered in professional development and passed on to the students.

Goshen Elementary School • Pike County • Grades K through 6

Project: “The Beauty of Learning Outdoors: Let's Beautify Goshen Elementary School!!"

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Description: In honor of Alabama’s Bicentennial Celebration, Goshen Elementary School would like to bring the beauty of learning outdoors to the Goshen Community. GES proposes to beautify our campus by establishing an outdoor classroom. This classroom would include student-centered seating, an outdoor chalkboard, a Bicentennial flower garden as well as a historical marker that would celebrate and honor its establishment. This project will enhance opportunities for children to gain knowledge and obtain skills in a natural environment. We intend to incorporate project-based learning experiences that focus on the distinct attributes of our rural community. These lessons have not limitations and can be utilized within all areas of learning such as art, math, English, reading, social studies, science, etc. These experiences will be highlighted since the children will be making learning connections within the beauty of our community. A dedication will be planned and celebrated for the unveiling of the GES Historical Marker and walk-through of the outdoor classroom. Those invited will include all those who contribute to making our school a “true beauty”-GES students and parents, GES faculty and staff, community members, Pike County Board members, Central Office staff as well as the local press, which will help document and preserve the event. By making it a public celebration, the goal is to build excitement and foster a community-wide allegiance to outdoor learning as well as a school-wide cross-curriculum commitment.

Pike County High School • Pike County • Grades 7 through 12

Project: “Creating a Culture of Character"

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Description: Creating a Culture of Character will facilitate in building support between Pike County High School, the Brundidge community, and Banks School by working together to enhance character education efforts. Many teenagers face issues with self-esteem due to factors including bullying and the media. These issues lead to deeper problems such as poor grades, substance abuse, and teen suicide. Pike County High School plans to work with the One Stop Center, Banks School, and Tupper-Lightfoot Memorial Library to promote positive self-esteem at school and in the community. The art teacher will lead the PCHS Art Club in painting murals at the One Stop Center and other locations within the community and the school to promote character-building and give the students and community members a sense of pride. Teachers will work with the One Stop Center, Tupper-Lightfoot Memorial Library, and Banks School to promote student and parent participation in after school activities.

Goshen High School • Pike County • Grades 7 through 12

Project: “Historical Beautification Project – Goshen, Alabama"

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Description: In honor of Alabama’s Bicentennial Celebration, Goshen High School would like to bring the celebration to the Goshen Community. GHS proposes to purchase a Historical Marker and design a Bicentennial Garden, which will incorporate indigenous and endangered flowers of Alabama. This Historical Beautification project will incorporate a project-based learning experience on the Goshen High School campus and throughout the Goshen community. We intend to incorporate flowers that are more indigenous and/or endangered to our area, but not limited to Pike County. Additionally, small informational markers will be added, which will identify the species, families, names, ect. of the plants. It is very important for our students and community to learn and know the history of their school. This project will enhance engagement and promote discussion between the community and students in and out of the classroom. A dedication will be planned and celebrated for the unveiling of the GHS Historical Marker and walk-through of the indigenous and endangered plants. Those invited will include citizens and friends of the community, PTO, Pike County Board members, faculty, staff, the GHS student body, GHS alumni, volunteers, and the local press, which will help document the event. By making this a public celebration, the goal is to build excitement and foster a school-wide cross-curriculum commitment.